In 2019, after Canadian singer Shawn Mendes finally had some time for himself, he found himself going through a rough time with his mental health. His girlfriend Camila Cabello recommended he download the Calm app, to help him through this tough time, especially with his anxiety.
Mendes told Vogue he sat down a couple of times before using the app and tried meditation on YouTube. But it wasn’t until about two and a half years ago, when he went through a “really tough time,” that he began meditating regularly. After he took 30 days of guided meditations with one of the most popular instructors off the Calm app, Jeff Warren, he was hooked. “It took me from a place of fear and anxiety to a place where I realized you can’t get anywhere if you don’t start with compassion for yourself.”
Now, both he and his girlfriend Cabello have released a series for Calm. It’s titled “Breathe Into It,” and it dives into their experiences in building a sense of self-love and gratitude, as well as overcoming anxiety. The two have also announced a multi-year partnership providing thousands of free memberships to youth activists and leaders through the Movement Voter Fund and the Shawn Mendes Foundation.
“People are willing to try something when it’s made accessible to them, so I’m hoping that we can just keep pushing this project forward and keep giving away more memberships. It’s just being able to kickstart a couple of people’s journeys into self-healing and wellness.”
Mendes told Vogue during an interview that he was drawn to Calm as a platform because he believes this app was created for everyone. “People who have just started meditating, people who haven’t meditated in a while, people who have meditated for a long time. You can go there and find the right teacher for you, as there are many different styles. It’s a very personal thing,” he said.
Mendes believes that being introduced to meditation and mindfulness has significantly helped both his and Cabello’s relationship last. “It allows me to be aware of when I’m not listening, for example, or I’m just replying to [Camila] out of wanting to be right in a conversation. It allows me to check myself and allows her to check me and be like, ‘Hey, you know, this is how you’re treating me right now,’” Mendes said.
“I think that in so many ways, mindfulness and meditation have really helped our relationship to stay in a place of honesty and love and never get too out of control. We’re not perfect, and we have our arguments like any relationship, but it never spins deeper than that, because we’re aware enough to know when our ego is getting involved,” Mendes expressed.